John Philip Sousa (1854-1932) was the world's most famous bandleader with a career spreading from his rise as director of the United States Marine Band (1880-92) to the Sousa Band (1892-1932).
During the 52-year span, Sousa and his musicians criss-crossed the nation and even performed around the world, making him America's first superstar millionaire musician.
Sousa managed to write hundreds of works for band and orchestra, including 136 marches, giving him the title "March King," and still had time to write novels, and autobiography, become a championship skeet shooter, outdoor sportsman, owner of a stable full of horses, gun collector, and become a married man with three children.
During World War I, at 62, Sousa received a Navy's officer's commission and organized Navy bands at Great Lakes near Chicago, leaving with the rank of Lieutenant Commander at war's end.
He once said, "When you hear of Sousa retired, you will learn of his death." Sure enough, after guest conducting a band in Pennsylvania, the 77-year-old went back to his hotel and suffered a fatal heart attack.
The Brazil Concert Band will salute Sousa with an all-Sousa review of several of his lesser known marches and excerpts from suites to include "A Century of Progress," "Presidential Polonaise," "Tales of a Traveler," "Solid Men to the Front," "Easter Monday on the White House Lawn" and "Peaches and Cream."
Also, the band will perform, "At the Movies," "Dwellers of the Western World," "Marching Along," "People Who Live in Glass Houses" and "The Untitled March."